Ragweed – Ambrosia Artemisiifolia: Sneeziest of Edible & Medicinal Wild Plants

Does anyone have an Anishinaabemowin word for ragweed? This maligned plant while rare-ish in Haliburton and considered a “weed” in this part of Ontario is actually native to North America. It’s at least as valuable to a wide swath of wildlife (mainly pollinators) as it is likely to cause a human to sneeze. You might …

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Heal-All – Prunella Vulgaris: Another Woundwort of Edible & Medicinal Wild Plants

In Chippewa, name’wuskons, selfheal or heal-all is another edible and medicinal wild plant from the mint family. It doesn’t really heal-all, but it’s still a well rounded astringent plant with many uses. We have a mix of European and native selfheal in Ontario. Common around Haliburton, you’re most likely to find it in your lawn. …

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Bergamot – Monarda Spp.: Bee Balm of Edible & Medicinal Wild Plants

In Anishinaabemowin, sasaapkwaanins, bergamot is also popularly known as bee balm. It’s a native edible and medicinal plant that’s frequented by pollinators (although that’s not why it’s called bee balm!) And it’s a mint, named after the similar tasting bergamot orange that flavors earl grey tea. Wild bergamot (monarda fistulosa) is rare here. It’s the …

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Canada Plum – Prunus Nigra: Scorned of Edible & Medicinal Wild Plants

In Ojibwe, bagesaanaatig means plum tree. This edible and medicinal plum tree used to be widespread throughout Ontario. The stones were dropped along trails and around villages, wrapping the world in a plum thicket. But now Canada plum is uncommon here, which is surprising as wildlife loves to gobble up the fruit, so you’d think it …

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Spring-Beauty – Claytonia Caroliniana: Fairy Spuds of Edible & Medicinal Wild Plants

In Anishinaabemowin, miiaatikwek piniik, spring-beauty is one of our first spring flowers. It’s a small, striped edible and medicinal ephemeral and one of our first available bee foods. It even has its own specialist bee, the spring beauty miner. You might see non-natives like crocus and coltsfoot bloom first in the spring, before our bees even …

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Blue-Eyed Grass – Sisyrinchium Montanum: Tiny Iris of Edible & Medicinal Wild Plants

Does anyone have an Anishinaabemowin word for blue-eyed grasses? Strict blue-eyed grass is in the iris family, and isn’t truly a grass. This edible and medicinal wildflower is widespread and around here may be one of the first you see dotting your lawn when you haven’t mowed. Sisyrinchium montanum is Halliburton’s only blue-eyed grass, but …

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